Orphan tigress Filippa learning to hide food from scavengers

Scientists are observing interesting interspecies relations in Filippa’s enclosure.Interspecies relationships can be one of the most interesting aspects of animal behavior, especially those between predator and prey.

For instance, a deer is not always on high alert when predators are near; in fact, it may graze calmly if the predator is not demonstrating hunting behavior.

Many bird species are food for predators.

Pheasants may be prey for tigers and leopards in the Primorye region of Russia, but it appears that pheasants regularly fly in Filippa's enclosure, not fearing the young tigress and carrion crows often take her food scraps.

During the year the types of birds near the enclosure changes: during winter it is mostly carrion crows, Eurasian magpies and nuthatches, and in May azure-winged magpies arrive.

Thanks to them, the young tigress is learning to hide her prey.

Scientists believe that following, concealing and chasing their guests are ways for predators to practice their hunting skills as well.

--EB

Learn more about how Filippa got her name.

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